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MESSAGE FROM PROFESSOR PETER LIM
Women have received considerable attention over the last 50 years. NO SUCH ATTENTION has ever been given to men.
The World Health Organistion drew attention to the “male dilemma” which will affect developing countries more than developed nations. By the year 2050, the number of aged men in developing countries and in the Third World will bankrupt the governments of these nations if their men folk become incapacitated or become financially non-viable when they are reaching their mid-life. If they do not become sick but are just emotionally, psychologically and physically under-charged and not capable of the level of productivity previously attainable in their 30s and 40s, this will translate into economic loss for their families, their companies, their country and the national progress and development of their nations. We have to take into serious consideration that in the developing countries and in the Third World, the men are generally the main breadwinners in the social structure.
This interest in the ageing male lent added fillip to the new field of men’s health which addresses specifically the special attributes and behavious of men as they develop from their youth to adulthood. It also identifies the peculiar psychosocial behaviour, physical and other diseases and risk factors that may be modified by education and the targeting of health care resources to areas of health screening and preventive medicine to aid early detection of disease and treatment. In the medical profession, specialists and non-specialists are increasingly asking for a stake in this field as they encounter more and more patients presenting sexual, fertility and the psycological and physical complaints.
An appreciation of men’s health requires a strong background of epidermiology and its tools. In this regard, man’s role as the aggressor, the risk-taker and this susceptibility to trauma and injury is an epidermiologic observation of great import. Men’s health issues include psychological and sexual health including Sexual Medicine, Erectile Dysfunction, and Male Reproduction and Male Infertility. In this age range, diseases of the Prostate and Genito-Urinary Organs are particularly prevalent. Throughout all ages, Sexually Transmitted Diseases are common amongst males!
The Society for Men's Health (Singapore) has begun a new age to champion the cause for the betterment of men’s health; this it will do by education of medical professionals and the public by lobbying for more attention to be directed towards men’s health in the political arena, in the media and especially to healthcare providers in this country. It will encourage research in the science of ageing and gerontology and what we popularly refer to today as “Positive Ageing”. This new magazine of the society bears these educational objectives in mind to prepare our society’s ageing male for the mid-life – to recognise it as a new beginning. It is possibly the most important aspect of men’s health to be addressed, as the old and the elderly, due to greater longevity, will increasingly populate the earth. The challenge is to encourage preventive and other strategies for healthy positive ageing, “prevent the preventable and avoid the inevitable” – if you will!
PROF PETER H.C.LIM,